By on March 19, 2014

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It’s been thirty days and 2,420 miles since I took delivery of my 2014 Accord EX-L V6 in Modern Steel. The big Honda had big shoes to fill; although it was, strictly speaking, a replacement for my dearly-departed, bent-like-a-pretzel 2009 Town Car, I knew from the moment I sat in it that I’d really be comparing it against my notorious sold-for-big-bucks-to-San-Francisco 2009 Audi S5 4.2. It makes sense: two FWD-platform coupes with six-speed manual transmissions, leather interiors, somewhere in the vicinity of three hundred horsepower, and some concessions both to practicality and emotion.

But before I could compare it to an Audi, I had to face a former co-worker of mine at Honda who drove to my house specifically to remind me that I had sworn that I would never, ever purchase anything built by the company’s North American operations.

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Naturally, he drove his brand-new six-speed manual Civic EX Coupe over to deliver said reminder. How we laughed. When we’d left Marysville for good, on the same day a few years ago, he and I had both made that vow, only to independently break it within three days of each other.

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Just one of those coincidences, I suppose. Or perhaps it’s a recognition of the fact that Honda appears to be coming back into its stride, one painful model revision at a time. The last Accord and Civic were not brilliant automobiles and that, combined with the company’s disturbing focus on its plus-size minivans and SUVs, appeared to indicate that Honda wanted nothing more than to be another Toyota, cranking out the most volume of reliable but charmless “product” possible. But now the crisis has passed and we’re back on track. Maybe.

In the first month of Accord ownership, I’ve averaged eighty miles per diem and I have had a few days where I put more than four hundred miles on the G-Shock-style center instrument display. Any minute now I’ll have to have it serviced for the first time, which means dealing with a Honda service department. Ugh. Can’t wait. Fearless prediction: for at least three hours of the near future, I’ll wish I’d bought a TSX instead.

It’s ironic, because in loaded-up six-cylinder form, the Accord has all the qualities you’d wish for in a modern Acura CL. To start with, it’s eerily quiet, presumably because of the Active Noise Cancellation and a wind-tunnel refinement of the previous-gen body shape. Most of the materials you see and touch are at least up to Acura spec, even if they don’t come close to my old Audi’s mix of deep-brown leather, real carbon fiber, cold-to-the-touch aluminum, and laser-fitted detailing. Seriously. If you want to know what the difference is between a $31,450 Honda coupe and a $61,900 Audi coupe, it’s readily apparent once you open the door and take a seat.

Once on the move, you’ll discover a similar gap in dynamics — but this time, it’s not all in the S5’s favor. The unique variant of the J35 engine fitted to manual Accords has been caught spinning dynos to the tune of 260 horsepower or more, leading to speculation that this might be the first underrated engine in the company’s history. Couple that with a curb weight decidedly south of the Audi’s and the net result is a coupe that sprints for the open holes in traffic with urgency befitting an S5 — or a 335i, come to think of it. Naturally, the steering wheel will fight you every step of the way. It’s a fast car, relatively speaking, and I’m not sure my 993 or Boxster S would drop it by much from a roll. Once the salt’s off the road, we’ll find out for sure.

The Coupe is also delightfully light on its feet. It simply refuses to display the sort of leaden inertia that the “small” German coupes have now. Only the Mercedes C250 has the same kind of delicacy on the move, and that’s at the cost of having a four-cylinder mill in the nose. Lateral grip and transition behavior are both good, even on broken pavement. I’ll run it around a racetrack in the near future. There’s no chance it will be a road course superstar — too much weight on the nose, not enough brake — but it should be at least as competent as most of the entry-luxury cars.

Long-time TTAC readers will recall that it was the seven-speaker stereo that pushed me over the EX-L edge, and I remain satisfied with that decision. It’s not a patch on the optional sound system in the S5, but it offers very competent Bluetooth integration and it is at least competent in daily usage. The touchscreen in the center console is convenient, although here again Audi’s MMI system is just a better, more thoroughly realized mousetrap.

So far I haven’t regretted leaving the two rear doors back at the Honda dealership. There’s enough room for the battleship-sized Britax Pinnacle child seat in the back, there’s enough room for a wheelchair and crutches in the trunk, and in a pinch you can put four grownups and a kid in the thing for short distances. It won’t carry my bass amp and SWR 4×12″ cabinet the way the Town Car did, but the rear seats fold and that makes it easier to do things like run a couple of boxed-up archtop guitars to the UPS Store.

A couple hundred miles spent behind a V6 Mustang on the way to Louisville two weeks ago made me consider long and hard whether I wouldn’t have been happier with one of those. After some thought, I decided that the Accord’s practicality advantages made it a much better idea for me. If I didn’t have two Porsches in the garage, I’d be tempted to put a GT500 in one of the slots for days when I’d rather chirp the back wheels in third than the fronts in second. Since I do have the Porkers, however, and although the V6 Mustang in Performance trim is a better dynamic proposition and considerably more handsome to boot, I’ll take the larger trunk, bigger rear seat, and considerable improvement in outward visibility that the Accord offers.

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One area where the Honda simply blows my old Audi away is, of course, efficiency. Long mixed-use trips result in average consumption figures between 28 and 31mpg, with long freeway trips often showing 32. Around town, most trips are self-reported by the computer at around 23-26mpg, figures that seem to match up with my frequency of refueling. The S5, by contrast, rarely broke the twenty mark and would sometimes dip below ten for trips in the city. I never minded at the time; it was the price I willingly paid for the majestic swell of the direct-injected V-8’s powerband and the sound it made getting up to speed. This “EarthDreams” six can’t compete on an emotional level, but it’s about ninety percent of the performance and character for half the money.

That describes the Accord pretty well overall; most of what you’d expect from a prestige coupe, at half-price. My brief experience with the BMW 435i didn’t show me anything that would lead me to choose it over the Honda, and the current S5 has submitted to a cylinder-gelding that is not adequately reimbursed by the addition of a supercharger. (Save your angry posts about quarter-mile times; I know the 3.0 “T” is as good or better on paper, but in the metal it’s a depressing step down.) Think of this Ohio-built Honda as an ORIS watch: it possesses the bulk of the competitors’ virtues and it doesn’t command anything like the same price.

There are a few areas where the $20,000 Accord LX shines through the $31,450 EX-L veneer, however. There’s no automatic day-night rearview mirror, which seems like a deliberate way to toss a few bucks towards the dealers in the aftermarket. The passenger seat has no true mechanical memory and therefore has to be readjusted whenever you let someone in or out of the back seat. There’s room for bigger brakes and given the ease with which the Coupe speeds to 130+ the minute the road opens up, those bigger brakes should be make available. The decklid has no carpeted handle, the quick-shedding floormats are possibly the worst ones ever fitted to a motor vehicle, and there are no options for the rear seat passenger to adjust the temperature or volume of the air blowing her way.

Still, this is a tangible step above the rest of the mid-priced competition, from the old Chrysler 200 to the class-leading Camry. Only the Fusion really gives it a run for the money in terms of interior and exterior give-a-damn, and I defy you to find me a stick-shift V-6 Fusion anywhere. No, this is as good as it gets around thirty grand. After a month and a few thousand miles, I am more steadfast in that conviction than I was at the beginning of the adventure. d’Accord? D’accord.

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A free TTAC shirt to the first US-located reader to identify the location for the solo photos. Offer not valid for my Facebook friends — JB

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228 Comments on “Un Mois d’Accord...”


  • avatar
    carrya1911

    Pretty much how I felt about it. When I drove the top trim Accord coupe I remember remarking to myself that it was easily as nice as the lower end BMW’s I had driven.

    • 0 avatar
      vvk

      And just as expensive.

      • 0 avatar
        Turbo-4

        I couldn’t find any 260 whp J35’s but did find numbers were spot on:

        http://www.vtec.net/articles/view-article?article_id=1123025&page_number=2

        You could get an S5 now for the same price as you paid. Much more creed at the valet pulling up with an Audi than a Honda.

    • 0 avatar
      Nick 2012

      Glad you like it Jack. Every day I drive my 6MT sport I’m shocked at the value proposition, especially when I ride in a colleague’s TSX that he paid 35k for.

      Carrya1911, you’ve got a 6MT sport, right? Do you miss the V6? I drive about 70mi a day and didn’t want the fuel economy hit, but now I’m thinking that may have been a mistake :). I’ve also got two kids rear facing in car seats, so back doors are a must.

      • 0 avatar
        carrya1911

        Honestly, yes…there are times where I find myself thinking “I coulda had the V6!” but I’ve never really lacked power to pass or to zip uphill on a nice twisty mountain road. It’s likely more psychological than anything else.

    • 0 avatar
      3Deuce27

      At ‘JB’/911 _ The only ‘unique’ human talent, is self deception.

    • 0 avatar
      EX35

      curious as to how a torque steering fwd chassis drives as nice as a proper rwd sports sedan?

      • 0 avatar
        rpn453

        I see you aren’t familiar with the F30. I’ll let Car and Driver describe the current state of BMW’s compacts:

        “. . . the driver is isolated from wheel and suspension movements, and the slow steering seems so numb that it’s the pulsing of the inside front brake rather than any feedback through the wheel that indicates you’ve reached the cornering limit. At 0.90g, that limit is handily topped by the Audi, which feels like the better balanced and livelier car. This is especially surprising given the S5’s greater forward weight bias. The BMW’s numbness saps driver confidence, as the car doesn’t provide enough information to form a complete picture of what’s happening at the tires.”

        I’ve driven a B8 S4 a fair bit, and even that is an extremely numb car. Hard to believe that BMW could have done worse in that regard, but they have.

        I’d take a communicative FWD over a lifeless, run-flat-equipped RWD.

  • avatar
    DeadWeight

    Ride quality over mediocre to poor/broken pavement?

    This has been a common & recurring complaint amongst members of Honda forums, and not having driven one, I’d really life to know if the “choppy/stiff ride” complaints ring true.

    Same question regarding complaints centered around numb steering feel, and dead spot on center.

    • 0 avatar
      VoGo

      I have an EX-L sedan, and the ride is definitely choppy on poor pavement – my least favorite part of the new Accord. I miss 16″ rims.

      • 0 avatar
        ShoogyBee

        I test drove a 2013 Accord Sport, which has even larger wheels than the EX-L, if I’m not mistaken. Looks terrific, but there’s no way I’d have one as a daily driver on our ravaged southeast Wisconsin roads. It’s quite awful on bumpy pavement.

    • 0 avatar
      Turbo-4

      Interested in the active noise cancelation too. Have you covered the microphones at highway cruise?

      How is the VDC changeover?

      • 0 avatar
        Jack Baruth

        I need to try that.

        The ride is what I expect from a mid-size coupe, and the steering is neither particularly dead nor particularly alive :) It’s about on par with an Audi.

    • 0 avatar
      Offbeat Oddity

      My 2007 Accord rides on the firm side, which is great for 90% of the driving I do, but it can get a bit rough on bad pavement. The car itself still feels composed, however.

      I hope the 2013+ Accord is a bit better in this area. Just a touch more suppleness would make the ride ideal.

      • 0 avatar
        sgeffe

        The ride is much better than the 7th-Gens, post-MMC. My 2013 Touring is much smoother than my 2006 was, with 215/55 R17 tires, versus P215/50 R17s on the 2006, so that extra height helps; in addition, the springs are a touch softer, and the MacStruts up-front, while diluting handling just a shade, help the ride.

        Over expansion joints, the car has a nice “clippity-clop” from the tires, without a lot of transmission of impacts into the passenger compartment or the wheel. Obviously, BIG stuff like potholes is going to get through, but it’s less than the 7th-Gens!

        I measure this kind of stuff by rattles and squeaks, and after a year of ownership, NOTHING of consequence! On my other three Hondas, I had them back to the dealer at least once to address a rattle within the first MONTH! (Only one I’ve got right now is the molding below the driver’s wiper on the OUTSIDE of the car; the rubbing noise is making its way into the interior!)

  • avatar
    qest

    Why do you compare it to the 200/Fusion rather than the 300/Taurus?

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      Because it competes with midsizers, not full-sizers, in both size and price. This car is about 1000 pounds lighter than either a 300 or a Taurus, and more than $10,000 cheaper than either one similarly equipped.

      • 0 avatar
        Dan

        $10,000 cheaper? I don’t know what a Taurus costs but a 300 with a V6, right wheel drive, and leather stickers for 31 and change.

        A $21,700 Honda is called a Civic.

        • 0 avatar
          dal20402

          I exaggerated, but only slightly. This car is as fast or faster than the Hemi 300, so I was comparing to the Hemi with Beats audio and no other options. MSRP on that one is $39,355.

        • 0 avatar
          qest

          He’s right. I was thinking both those cars can be had for that money, and they can, but then you’re looking at a stripper 300 vs. loaded Accordion.

          Toyota competes in that space with the Avalon, but the Accord is the biggest Honda makes outside Acura.

          Having toy cars in the garage puts the writer in the unusual situation of not needing a car that does just about everything itself.

          • 0 avatar
            Dan

            There’s no such thing as a stripper 300. The base model already has the V6, power heated leather, keyless entry, XM radio with a big touchscreen, etc.

            An Accord with those things lists $31,000.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            “An Accord with those things lists $31,000.”

            Only if it has the V6. But the four-cylinder Accord performs similarly to the V6 300, because the 300 is heavier than a circus’s worth of bull elephants.

            To get comparable performance to the V6 Accord, you have to step up to the Hemi.

          • 0 avatar
            Dan

            C&D:

            Accord I4, 15.9 @ 91.

            300 V6, 15.1 @ 96.

            Similarly?

            Granted the Accord V6 is about that much faster still, at the expense of torque steer and breaking the wrong end loose if you get on it at all.

            But in my book 15 seconds and good noises are an acceptable place to stop in a family car whereas 16 seconds and cheap noises are a good reason to walk away.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            Hmm? C&D has the four-cylinder Accord Sport at 15.2.

            http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/2013-honda-accord-sport-24-long-term-update-review

            Granted, trap speed is only 93 (as the 300 has reached the point by then when drag matters more than weight), but that’s similar enough to validate my point

          • 0 avatar
            Dan

            15.2 when dumping the clutch which approximately 1% of family car buyers want and, accordingly, 99% of Accords don’t have.

  • avatar
    Tomifobia

    You’ve both had your cars for a month, but haven’t gotten around to taking off those tacky dealer plates and frames? I remove the frames from my car purchases as soon as I get them home.

    • 0 avatar
      qest

      You don’t take those off if you expect decent service from the dealer.

      • 0 avatar
        vvk

        Say what?!

      • 0 avatar
        LALoser

        I take them off, and when I get the car back from service with the dealer…new ones are on it, just like magic. Rinse and repeat.

        • 0 avatar
          Zekele Ibo

          I would scream blue murder if a dealership did that to my car. However, I’ve never had that problem, and I have never had any issues with servicing because of the lack of decals on my vehicle.

          I always remove all dealership decals on the day I buy a car. It’s a car – my car – not an advertizing billboard. I can’t fathom why so many people put up with them!

    • 0 avatar
      snakebit

      You wait to get home to take them off? I have the salesman remove them before the car leaves his lot. Where is it written in the sales agreement that I shill for the dealer?

      • 0 avatar
        sproc

        At least they’re just license plate frames. I’ve never had to deal with it on a car I’ve bought, but mega-dealers who insist on putting a semi-permanent decal on the rear paint are 1000x worse.

        • 0 avatar
          Tomifobia

          My last car had a big, bubbly vinyl sticker on the back. I waited until a 90+ degree day, and parked it in the sun for a couple of hours. Peeled it off gently, then tacked up the residue. You’d never know it was there after I finished.

          • 0 avatar
            LALoser

            Next time call some glass shops around you and see if they have any plastic razor blades. C R Laurence supplies them. They are made to remove stickers, dirt, etc from very expensive coated glass.
            We went thru a ton of ‘em on a large-ish project where the fabricator put the fab stickers on the coated side….good times.

        • 0 avatar
          brettc

          My car had morong.com on the top of the rear window along with a license plate frame when I got it. A hair dryer and fingernails or a plastic/nylon scraper of some sort will get rid of those pesky dealer labels. On our newest car they didn’t have a chance to bling it up with their name since it was a dealer swap fresh off the truck. Either way, I refuse to advertise for a dealer unless they want to send me payment every month I keep it on.

        • 0 avatar
          Firestorm 500

          Back in the day, they drilled HOLES in your new car and affixed their metal nameplate with SCREWS.

          Before you even bought it!

          How’s that for permanent?

          • 0 avatar

            I’m sure there are people who collect those old dealer nameplates. They were so ubiquitous back in the ’60s that if I was doing a period restoration, I’d consider including one.

            With some dealers, their provenance is significant. I sure don’t see people removing Nickey, or Yenko logos from their vintage Chevys, or Royal Pontiac’s name from cars they massaged. The same goes for today’s more prominent tuning, custom and coachbuilding shops.

            I know people don’t like having to advertise the dealer, but the dealer has a significant investment in that car and wants to advertise their business after the sale. Retail items have hang tags for after the sale advertising (which helps prevent buyers’ remorse).

            My day job is doing custom embroidery. I’ll frequently affix hang tags to towels and other items that I know are going to be used as gifts. Nothing wrong with a little advertising.

            Though come to think of it, I do all the custom embroidery work for a friend and neighbor who is a sofer, a Jewish ritual scribe. He also sells tallitot, prayer shawls, and the (typically) velvet bags men use to store them. One Judaica manufacturer embroiders their full logo, about 3 inches wide, on the front of the velvet bags that come with their shawls. Okay, so it’s a freebie, but I still think it’s tacky. My friend doesn’t mind because it means customers buy bags with designs of their own choice, and then I get to customize them with their names.

          • 0 avatar
            3Deuce27

            I once, refused o take delivery of an ordered car, because the dealer had screwed his nameplate to it.

            When the vehicle was ordered, it was specifically noted on the sales contract, that the dealer name plate not be applied.

            We eventually settled, and I got a substantial discount.

            Damn! Better finish my zoup and get back to work.

          • 0 avatar

            Tre,

            Obviously, contracts are contracts.

            One of the first things that I wrote for TTAC was about a guy who was suing VW/Bugatti because the sales contract specified a full refund if it wasn’t delivered “as ordered” and he ordered an ’09, but they stamped ’08 VINs on it because they decided not to make any 2009 MY Veyrons.

            Once they agreed to refund the money, they still wanted to hold back $75,000 for the dealer’s commission.

        • 0 avatar
          TMA1

          The fact that there are so many of these on the road just indicates how little people really care about the car that they drive.

          • 0 avatar
            Tomifobia

            They’re particularly cheesy on luxury marques.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            I wouldn’t purchase a car from a dealer who applied something bearing it’s name on the back, until it was removed with no leftover evidence.

            There’s one around here, Jeff Wyler, who puts a big grey W on the back of everything they sell. Not kidding it’s the size of a golf ball.

            http://jeffwylerflorencehonda.com/New-2014-Honda-Accord-2DR-EX-CVT-Cincinnati-OH/vd/16930374

            Photo 4! OMG!

          • 0 avatar
            TMA1

            Tomifobia, I agree. But then, luxury buyers tend to be the most oblivious drivers of all. How can they notice a dealer tag on their stripper 320i when they’re so entranced by that roundel on the trunk?

          • 0 avatar
            snakebit

            Ronnie,

            “Nothing wrong with a little advertising” is the dealers song for leaving their frames, decals, and stick-on nameplates on a car you just took ownership of. I can see the stores point of view, and as long as they still own the car, they can install what they need to. But after a long, contentious bout with take-over manager after manager, and lie upon lie(which describes my very last experience getting a car for my son), I see no reason to further help fill the coffers of some dealers. I feel that if a dealer is so concerned with my recommending them to others, they can treat me better from the get go, and take the dealer label garbage off of my car before I leave their lot.

      • 0 avatar
        Kyree S. Williams

        I hate that the dealerships try to charge “advertising fee”, and then plaster their name all over your car with badges and license-plate frames. They should pay *you* an advertising fee for the privilege!

        • 0 avatar
          fredtal

          I’ve never been charged that fee, but I agree and why I always debadge my cars.

        • 0 avatar
          snakebit

          Kyree,
          This will probably be the only time I stand up for a dealer but… sometimes that advertising fee is legit when they pay into a group or regional dealer association ad council AND you’re not letting them collect that popular and very bogus ‘documentation’ fee, AND you’ve negotiated the price to nearly their true cost, AND they have no factory incentive money coming to them.

          You should be more concerned about the ‘doc’ fee. Nine times out of 10, the ad fee will be on the window sticker, if it’s being charged. The ‘documentation’ fee NEVER will. The salesman won’t tell you about it beforehand. You’ll only learn about it when it appears as the very last item on the purchase agreement, for the first time. Typically, it is a $200+ charge.
          All you need to know is that the dealer is not prevented in almost all states from asking for it. But, again in most states, you are under no legal requirement to have to pay that fee. Check with your state consumer affairs office. I’m willing to bet that their webpage has the state policy about document fees very close to the home page, it’s so contentious a dealer issue.

    • 0 avatar
      LeeK

      Like most states, Ohio requires a front license plate. My guess is that the permanent tags for these two brand-new cars haven’t come in yet so they are running with a temporary tag on the rear and a dealer ad on the front. When the permanent tags arrive, I’m sure Jack and his friend will give the dealer plates on the front the boot.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        It does require one, don’t mean ya gotta put it on :P. Been driving here without for years, because I think a plate on the front ruins the look of most cars, and I find it overkill. It also means you have an extra plate lying around, for if you buy something new and need a temporary! No unscrewing.

        I’m sure Mr. JB would never consider something so outside the law, however.

      • 0 avatar
        sgeffe

        Yes, Ohio requires the extra plate.

        When I had my broker facilitate the deal for my Accord in the avatar, I made sure he asked them not to put a sticker on, though a plate frame was OK. The dealer was more than happy to oblige–the dealer’s name is in white in the un-retouched picture, so they get a nice advertisement for a month post-delivery.

        As far as the temp. tags, Ohio tightened the rules at some point in the last few years, so you can’t just slap your old plates on the car until you change registration to the new one after obtaining clear or memorandum (financed) title.

        And no problems with service! :-) If they deny you decent service because you won’t let them plaster your ride with stickers, etc., then they don’t deserve your business! I’d bitch to the dealer principal about it, and firmly state that my business WILL go elsewhere, and that I’ll let everyone else in my “circle” know the same.

    • 0 avatar

      In my area, the screw-on badges are out of fashion, thank god! Or thank the cost-cutting. Anyhow, shady dealers apply stickers. My Jeep was covered in them, including places like the other side of the rear-view mirror. More upstanding dealers (like Lexus) do the frames.

      • 0 avatar
        sgeffe

        Which are nice enough to keep on the car most times, unless you buy another frame such as “My Other Car Is A Rolls,” or even better, a WeatherTech Plate-whatever!

        (Note on WeatherTech: the first frame they sent me had a twerked gasket, so I snapped a pic and sent it to them; a new one was overnighted to me, and when I asked how I should send the bad one back, they said “keep it, with our complements!” That “bad” frame now graces the front of the car! :-) )

    • 0 avatar
      Japanese Buick

      When I picked up my Miata at the dealer I handed the salesman my license plate (transferred from the previous car) and told him to put it on without a frame. He made some pseudo-hurt remark like “I just wanted to give you a frame to make it look good” but he complied. In the almost two years since I’ve never had a problem with dealer service though all it’s had is oil changes and state inspections.

  • avatar
    Astigmatism

    “Only the Fusion really gives it a run for the money in terms of interior and exterior give-a-damn”

    With more time to look at the design in real life, the Fusion looks more and more like a bloated pile of metal on the outside – a latter-day Sonata with a bad plastic surgery Aston Martin nose applique. The Mazda really needs to be in the exterior styling discussion in the segment.

  • avatar
    PonchoIndian

    I admire your choice of car Jack.

    I miss the days of affordable medium and full size coupes offered by virtually every manufacturer. I had 3 W-body Grand Prix coupes and an Eldorado. They were always the right size, 99% of the time they were completely practical, and they had a little (or a lot) of luxury and performance to offer (well the Eldorado and Turbo GP were fast for the time and handles pretty well).

    I think the new Impala would make a great full size coupe. The Regal would make a sexy looking coupe. The Challenger isn’t bad but too fat looking at most angles, I think the current style of the Charger would be better base for coupe style. Those, in my mind, are really the only cars that could translate easily to coupe and sedan existence with the same name slapped on the back.

  • avatar
    vb9594

    I own a ’13 EX V6 coupe 6MT. Car is fantastic- I considered a lot of the same vehicles Jack mentions above…but the performance and real world practicality of the Accord is what won me over.

    Yes- the ride is choppy on rough surfaces. Frankly, it’s too choppy. But…regular surfaces it’s velvety smooth and whispery quiet.

    The V6 with a stick is joy. I bought the car because of the sound it makes. Stand on it and the sound of the engine (and the power) is intoxicating. But…by no means is this a sports car. Very, very fast in a straight line with reasonably good handling.

    Huge value for the money, and the grin factor of driving a Honda Accord that goes like stink only adds to the feeling that you’re getting more than you paid for.

    • 0 avatar
      sgeffe

      Mid-30s mpgs with two pax on-board, full A/C at with cruise at 80+ mph on a road-trip (with the “ECO”-mode off) is the icing on the cake!

      (Please, Honda, I BEG you not to go down the turbo-four route! If you must, bump the Atkinson-cycle K ICE to a displacement that will give equivalent performance to the V6 Sedan at WOT with full zoot from the electric portion, then squeeze the battery pack into a space such that I can flop down the rear seat when necessary, put foglights on the thing, and I’ll be waiting with checkbook in hand when my 2013 is ready for trade! ** 40+ mpgs ** at Vmax, with 5-second 0-60s? NOW we’re talkin’! And I’m no “greenie weenie,” either!)

      • 0 avatar

        The Japanese seem a lot more strategic about this, especially given how important their reliability record is to them. They would rather have a very reliable V6 that reports nearer the numbers of other higher-performance options, than have a turbo 4-cylinder that ruins their (far more important rep) for reliability. Realistically, top-of-the-class, better-by-0.5mpg economy becomes less important if you are looking at the more powerful engines.

        Besides, the news on turbo 4s is out. They are great in some ways, but don’t reward the buyer with the fuel economy benefits that were promised and have a significantly worse frequency of repair record.

        Note that none of the Japanese automakers offer a turbo in this class. Very interesting.

  • avatar
    jmo

    How does the ride compare with a C250 or 4 series? That’s where I’ve noticed you can tell the difference between 30k and 60k – every time you hit a bump.

    • 0 avatar
      imag

      I agree. And I would include Lexus IS, which has a pretty stunning ride.

      • 0 avatar
        Jack Baruth

        This doesn’t ride like the IS, which is a brilliant car in my opinion.

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          I don’t understand the love, or even like, of the Lexus IS, especially in barely 200 HP 6 cylinder attire.

          This is especially befuddling when one considers its MSRP, and some much better, agile and faster competitors for the same or even significantly less money.

          I almost get the GS with the larger 6, because horsepower…

          The IS leaves me’completely underwhelmed from the inside out.

        • 0 avatar
          3Deuce27

          Reg; “the IS, which is a brilliant car in my opinion.”_ JB

          I wouldn’t apply the term ‘brilliant’ to the ‘is 250′ or ‘F’, but it is a pretty darn good car for the segment.

          No fixed head coupe or manual transmission, means no way for me. And, only 204Hp compared to the ATS’s 274Hp. Sure, you don’t really need the extra Hp, but it doesn’t cost anymore, and the MPG is comparable.

          But maybe you were thinking ‘is 350’… ?

          • 0 avatar
            Jack Baruth

            I really was. I haven’t even driven the IS250. Just the IS350, which I have really, really enjoyed.

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            Calling the IS “brilliant” is hyperbole.

            Calling it “very good” would be quite the stretch. I think even Alex Dykes would draw the line there, and he grades on a B curve.

            In fact, labeling it “good” would be embellishing the vehicle with a more positive descriptor than is objectively warranted.

            Jack claiming it as “brilliant” is a real head scratcher. I’m scratching my head.

          • 0 avatar
            burgersandbeer

            @DeadWeight – Have you driven it? Or any of the wide range of cars you seem to hate?

            Other comments suggest you have done a lot of test driving thinking about what comes after your beloved RX-8, so I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt in most cases; however, your inability to find a redeeming quality in most anything on four wheels makes me wonder.

            I’ll admit I have not driven the IS, but from what I’ve read, my only concerns are a lack of manual transmission and a tight back seat. And of course being about $10k out of my price range.

          • 0 avatar
            Jack Baruth

            During the days of testing that led to this article…

            http://www.roadandtrack.com/car-reviews/road-tests/the-comparison-65-3-roa1013-4

            I came to absolutely adore the IS350.

            http://jackbaruth.com/?p=413

            If they made it with a stick-shift, I wouldn’t have considered another sub-$50k car for a single moment. When you need to run 120mph in standing water, this is the one.

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            I made it a point to drive it once I read CR’s scathing review of it, and found there criticisms fully justified, especially when price is taken into consideration.

            I’ve been test driving quite a few vehicles as of late, and to be absolutely honest, am finding a scarcity of compelling ones, a glut of mediocre ones, and more than a few awful ones, which makes for a very depressing automotive landscape at the present time.

            I’d go so far as to suggest the possibility that we’ve entered a new malaise era, despite the smorgasbord of new technology that automakers and many auto “journalists/critics” claim add up to enhanced a d better driving dynamics.

            I vastly prefer the vehicles from the approximate 1995 to 2006 period versus those of today, depending on make & model.

          • 0 avatar
            Kenmore

            “When you need to run 120mph in standing water”

            Because flying monkeys can do 100 and they’ll herd you towards water.

          • 0 avatar
            3Deuce27

            ‘is350’_ Yes, nice, and I even have to admit I liked the auto box. Loved the dash, instrument cluster, stack, and seats. Engine purred and was quick to redline.

            Chassis is very composed, even on Jump Off Joe, which has the disturbing habit of unweighting a chassis and throwing cars in the air in the wrong direction at big Redwood trees. Hard rudder, and full ailerons, while using all of your down elevator control is what is needed on those lifting, short coupled, compound curve roller coaster monsters.

            Hard to believe this was the main interstate hwy, until I-5 was built, until you realize that when hwy-99 was built, people were driving Hudson Model-20’s and Model_T’s and it followed the old Indian trade and seasonal migration trail.

            Someday, I’m going to have to figure out this You Tube thing, and get a couple of Go-Pro cameras and post a run of JOJ and National Forest hwy 24/25, and the Lolo Pass rd. on Mt. Hood.

  • avatar
    PRNDLOL

    I have a question: have you and Derek discussed his opinion of the Accord’s interior as it compares to the 2015 Chrysler 200 just four articles below this one?

    • 0 avatar
      burgersandbeer

      Did you read the Chrysler 200 article? Derek’s opinion of the Chysler 200 interior compared to an Accord is pretty clear.

      • 0 avatar
        PRNDLOL

        I asked if they had discussed Derek’s opinion. I know what Derek thinks because I read the article, hence this post. I think you should read my post again, you missed something.

  • avatar
    mu_redskin

    The first photo is the art museum at Miami University.

  • avatar
    wmba

    Excellent synopsis for me. Thanks, Jack.

    Pretty much what I hoped you say, rather than what I feared you might.

    • 0 avatar

      What did you fear? just curious.

      • 0 avatar
        wmba

        Hi Marcelo,

        Torque steer that was unmanageable, grinding understeer and an unacceptable ride once the cold light of reality set in a few days after purchase. Instead he mentioned the car felt light on its feet, with some wheel fight under hard acceleration and an OK ride. The brakes always seem to be marginal on Accords, so no surprise there.

        • 0 avatar

          Got it, thanks, wmba!

        • 0 avatar

          Torque steer and understeer are different things. The former is the changes in steering geometry when throttle is applied, and the latter is a direction of chassis imbalance. Note that you can affect balance with throttle in any car, RWD and FWD. It’s actually a desirable quality and not related to torque steer.

          • 0 avatar

            I’ve always understood torque steer is the result of unequal length drive shafts when the final drive of a FWD car is offset to one side. They can play around with shaft diameters and whether they’re hollow or not but unless they go to more sophisticated suspension designs, torque steer will be around for a while.

            From Wikipedia:
            “When the driveshafts have different length and excessive torque is applied, the longer half shaft flexes more than the shorter one. However, this is a short term transient effect. To avoid fatigue failure, the amount of drive shaft torsional deflection must necessarily be small. Effects due to one wheel spinning more slowly than the other are usually negligible. Equal lengths of the driveshafts, in the case of no asymmetric suspension deflection due to roll or bump, keep the drive shaft angles equal. The main component of torque steer occurs when the torques in the driveshaft and the hub are summed vectorially, giving a resultant torque vector around the steering pivot axis (kingpin). These torques can be substantial, and in the case of shafts making equal angles to the hub shafts, will oppose one another at the steering rack, and so will cancel. These torques are strongly influenced by the position of the driveshaft universal joint (CV joint) in relation to the steering axis, however due to other requirements such as achieving a small or negative scrub radius an optimum solution is not generally possible with simple suspension configurations such as Macpherson strut.”

          • 0 avatar

            The unequal length effect exists, but you can easily establish that torque steer tugs on your hands in both left and right turns in a car with bad front geometry, like late-gen Eclipse. At least where I saw it, that is to say in econoboxes from the 90s, most of it was caused by the vertical torque against the axis on which the upright turns. When accelerating straight, the left and right compensate, but when turning, the inside wheel can slip more and then the other wheel pulls the steering. The arm of the torque is the distance between the center of the contact patch and projection of the steering axis on the pavement. Torque steer can have other causes, too. Their magnitude is somewhere around the unequal shaft size, e.g. IMHO not bad. The deformation of rubber in joints can be a factor, as well as excessive body roll that makes left and right asymmetric.

            Overall I think we need another Ali Shah article on the topic. It’s something the FWD drivers may find interesting even if they do not run in Lemons.

          • 0 avatar

            > The unequal length effect exists, but you can easily establish that torque steer tugs on your hands in both left and right turns in a car with bad front geometry

            Just to further clarify, there’s the asymmetric torque steer caused by asymmetric axles, and there’s the fwd torque steer caused by using the same wheels to apply torque and turn.

            It’s just confusing when people use the same term to describe different things.

          • 0 avatar
            wmba

            @ Pete Zaitcev:

            I hope you’re not ascribing to me the thought that torque steer and understeer are the same thing. I know the difference and did not imply they were the same thing.

            Torque steer is an interesting phenomenon. Your explanation is a very good summary of everything I’ve read on the subject. There was a good discussion on the Technical Forum of Autosport.com.

            My AWD Impreza exhibited torque steer in light snow conditions. That was a repeatable characteristic which I explored time and again while wondering, why? Never reached a conclusion. Putting an Outback sway bar on the back of the Impreza did cure it of its piggy understeer, but never affected the torque steer.

        • 0 avatar
          sgeffe

          Don’t really notice much T/S on my 2013 Sedan, but I try to baby it anyway.

          I only remember having the wheel ripped out of my hands once on my 2006 Accord V6; I tended to beat the snot out of that car, as I was generally “angrier” up until a few years ago.

          The brakes are much improved on this Accord versus previous ones–Honda finally might be turning a corner there!

          The slushbox Honda you could hoon foreverandeverandever was the B16/slusher combo in the Civic EXs of the 4th and 5th-Generations. (1990-1991, 1992-1995). You floor it, and it would just GO, and ask for more!! Try that with a 6th-Gen Accord V6 (1998-2002), and it’s bye-bye tranny!

  • avatar
    imag

    I suspect that Honda is Acura’s biggest competitor at this point. It’s pretty hard to rationalize spending more on a FWD car.

  • avatar
    davefromcalgary

    Jack,

    Can you please comment on engine break in? I am eagerly awaiting the Verano and I am sh1t scared of doing it wrong.

    One one hand is the dealer recommended baby the car/somewhere below fun driving method, which seems to be a general consensus as to how to break in a car.

    However, there are detractors on line. They claim that the purpose of break in is to hone the piston rings against the cylinder walls, effectively seating them. They claim that spring tension on piston rings isn’t enough to contain the pressures built up in the cylinder, and that the pressure itself of the compressed gases forces the piston rings against the cylinder wall. Thus, they recommend, especially for the first 100 miles, that large throttle openings at low RPM will help with this honing procedure, as this will force the piston rings against the cylinder wall with greater pressure, resulting in a superior seal in the long run. Change the oil within the first 100 miles. The article below notes that “if you drive in stop and go traffic you should be fine.”

    http://www.popularmechanics.com/cars/how-to/saturday-mechanic-blog/how-to-break-in-a-new-car

    Finally, Sajeev did a Piston Slap on this a few years ago. http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2009/05/piston-slap-how-not-to-break-in-a-new-engine/

    Based on all of this, it seems to me the best procedure is somewhat middle of the road. Give it the boots during engine break in, but don’t be redlining or abusing it, and dont drive like granny on her way to church either. My commute consists of some urban traffic, and some short free way runs. I think if I take the on ramps with some gusto but generally still drive in a sane matter I will achieve that middle of the road.

    What procedure did you follow Jack? You obviously have a wide and varied stable so hopefully you have done this more than once and can offer some cogent insight.

    And of course any B&B have any insight, bring it in.

    Thanks

    • 0 avatar
      EX35

      engine “break in” is largely a thing of the past for most production engines. Sajeev’s recommended break in procedure is essentially: drive the car like you would normally do.

    • 0 avatar
      Firestorm 500

      Drive it like you stole it. Or drive it like a rental car. Same thing.

    • 0 avatar
      darkwing

      Verano break-in == trifecta tune, right?

    • 0 avatar
      Grumpy

      Check out Paul Niedermeyer at Curbside Classics who wrote about picking up his brand new TSX Sport Wagon in Idaho. He never commented on break in procedure but did proceed to haul ass back to Portland at speeds of up to 130 mph, and seemingly cruised for hours at a time over 100mph on smooth deserted roads. Not sure what the plan was, but I believe he is now somewhat on in years. Hopefully just didn’t forget that the car was brand new!

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      I kept it off the redline and out of full throttle for the first thousand miles — but these cars are all redlined before they leave the factory, three times each.

      • 0 avatar
        davefromcalgary

        So do you think my “normal driving habits” with the odd exuberant scoot (no redline) up the onramp would fall under “safe” break in procedure?

        • 0 avatar
          EX35

          What is the alternative to driving the car normally, idling the car down the street?

          • 0 avatar
            davefromcalgary

            An acquaintance of mine recently bought a new Impreza and for 2000 kms it never saw above 3000 on the tach.

            Thats the “baby it” approach. I drive more aggressively than that.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            My Subaru manual recommended avoiding hard acceleration or high revs for the first 1000 miles of my Forester XT’s life. We kept it under 4000. It burns no oil, so far (15,000 miles).

            My Pontiac G8 manual has an elaborate series of prohibitions: no constant speed or engine braking for 500 miles, no full throttle for 600 miles, no traveling over 68 mph for more than 5 minutes for the first 3000 miles (!). I was gentle to it for the first 600 and then drove it normally. But it was delivered with 184 miles and I’m pretty sure some of those miles were, um, spirited. “The owner took it home for the weekend to check it out” is how it was explained to me, and it got me a $200 discount on top of the negotiated discount. It burns no oil at all after 32,000 miles.

          • 0 avatar
            burgersandbeer

            @dal20402

            Where those GM’s recommendations for the G8? It almost sounds like they are setting you up to fail so they can blame owners for any problems down the road. What happens @ 69 mph?

            No engine braking with a manual would be an impossible habit for me to break. It’s not something I think much about anymore, it just happens.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            That is what is listed in the G8 owner’s manual, in bold type. I obeyed the 600-mile part, but not the 3000-mile part. 1600 of the first 3000 miles consisted of a road trip from DC to Vermont, much of which was spent at around 80 mph.

        • 0 avatar
          Turbo-4

          I wondered how my girlfriend’s 2012 Forester was broken in by her at it burns 2.5 quarts brtween changes at 20K miles.

      • 0 avatar
        burgersandbeer

        Doesn’t every “new” car see full throttle or very close to it during test drives?

      • 0 avatar
        sgeffe

        Occasionally, at freeway speeds, if traffic allowed, I would take off cruise and let the speed drop down to about 50, then boot it to around 80mph (which hit maybe 6000rpms). Engine only used a little oil because of the Variable Cylinder Management (VCM–Honda’s variable-displacement system) over a 500-mile stretch — the first use of oil in ANY of my Hondas in the past 20 years — then stopped. Took the car right up to 15% on the oil-life monitor, then sent a sample to Blackstone Labs in Fort Wayne, IN, who stated that things didn’t look out-of-order for the factory-fill (keeping in mind that Honda uses a special break-in additive package in their factory oil).

        Other than that, I just made sure to vary speeds as much as possible — taking the cruise off and NOT honing back up to speed, for example, and not letting the car idle more than necessary.

        (The slushbox doesn’t let you get quite to redline — about 200 south is what I’ve seen! ;-) )

  • avatar
    EX35

    For about the same price, after incentives, you could pick up a new Infiniti G37.

    – Proper RWD
    – 330 HP
    – tight hydraulic steering
    – excellant brake feel
    – longer warranty
    – very nice dealer service w/ loaners

    I drove both the Accord and G back to back. No contest. Since they are practically giving away 2013 G’s, it was a no brainer.

    However, the G is no longer offered witha manual, which is probably a drawback for many of you.

    • 0 avatar
      kvndoom

      Um, I’ve been in both. The G has a mail slot for a trunk and boosters for rear seats. As much as I’d love a G37, it’s not even remotely a family car.

      • 0 avatar
        EX35

        The G37 sedan? I find the trunk and the back seat to be adeqautely sized, certainly better than this Accord coupe. If you want lots of space for a family, there are better options than a midsize sedan.

        • 0 avatar
          kvndoom

          You didn’t mention sedan. I assumed you were comparing coupes to coupes.

          • 0 avatar
            TMA1

            The G37 name only continued in sedan form, the coupe became the Q60. Same as the old G37 coupe, but for some reason the starting price is higher than the Q50 sedan.

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            Nissan made refined, well engineered vehicles once upon a time, but it’s been a long time since that has been the case.

            From the Armada to the Versa, and from the Titan to the Altima, including the Z and Infinity derivatives, Nissan is clearly a 2nd tier Japanese automaker, slotting in between Lexus & Mitsubishi, in terms of engineering quality, NVH, and reliability.

            The M series Infinitys are Nissan’s best engineered and most competitive offerings by a wide margin.

          • 0 avatar
            EX35

            Apparently, you have not driven an Infiniti. Nissan and Infiniti are two completely different worlds in terms of build quality (all G and M based models in Japan), component quality, and dealer service. For around $30K, there is nothing that can compete with a G. At 50K+, I agree, competition starts to tighten up.

            P.S. for someone who claims to know Infiniti, you might want to make a mental note of the correct spelling.

          • 0 avatar
            mnm4ever

            Gee I wonder what kind of car @EX35 drives? :)

            Seriously though, I have driven and ridden in a lot of Infiniti products, and I have not noticed any dramatic difference from the Nissan side of the house. That has always been my problem with Infiniti, it just isn’t much nicer than a regular Nissan inside. I love that they stepped up and offered a RWD platform, and I agree that the G is a compelling bargain. But they dropped the manual, so it is completely off my radar. But I don’t get in an Infiniti and get impressed by the high quality, and I haven’t seen a lot of older used Infiniti products that look like the held up. The quality just doesn’t seem to be there.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            @mnm

            I think what you see often with older Infiniti products is an owner maintenance issue. Unlike Lexus, where a second owner might be an upstanding businessman/old man/etc, Infiniti products seem to end up in the hands of someone who wants to A) VIP/tuner it (especially with coupe versions), B) bought too much car and won’t maintain it, or C) simply purchased it because it was black.

            They’re the sorts of people who park them outside at their apartment and never wash them, and let the kids tear up the back seat.

            But, if you see an older one that’s had a responsible 1st/2nd/3rd owner, I feel this is not the case.

            Oh and RE: Interiors. The nicest Nissan inside is the Maxima, yes? Check one out, then visit an M. There’s a BIG difference.

          • 0 avatar
            PonchoIndian

            Corey
            So what you’re saying is that an Infinity needs more care and maintenance than its competitors to stay in good shape over the course of a few owners…

            Lets be honest, this is true of any car out there.

            I’ve seen used Cavaliers that look brand new because they were cared for by the owner.

          • 0 avatar
            mnm4ever

            @Corey – Yea I can see that and you may be right. But I have 3 coworkers that are original owners of the cars and took care of them, didn’t abuse them, and they just don’t seem to hold up as well as a Lexus or Acura of similar age. Little things like creaky center consoles, brittle plastic. Mechanically the cars seem great, but then again so do Nissans. That’s all I am saying, I just don’t see any big quality gap between Infiniti and Nissan. I’d make the same claim about Honda and Acura, but at least Infiniti makes more differentiation between the 2 brands. Lexus seems a definite cut above Toyota though.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            @poncho

            Did you actually read what I said? Or did you skim it and then twist a conclusion? I’ll let you try again, because what you said isn’t even relevant.

          • 0 avatar
            PonchoIndian

            Corey
            I read exactly what you said. Sounded like a lot of excuses and hypothetical explanations on why an Infinity doesn’t hold up as well over the long term as its competitors.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            I’ll restate very simply.

            -Lexus ends up with owner 2 or 3 who cares and maintains.

            -Infiniti ends up with owner 2 or 3 who does not care nor maintains.

            Hence, you see them in worse condition because of who buys them after the first owner. Notice the spelling as well, it has no y in it.

          • 0 avatar
            PonchoIndian

            I’ll reply very simply for you,

            That is your take on it in the form of an excuse. Also a swell form of profiling that can be applied to any car ever made.

            Thank you for pointing out my spelling mistake. I forgot to follow your example of superiority and perfection in my spelling. Do you deflate the ego often or just walk around on light feet all the time?

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            It’s a brand name, and a one word correction. There’s one way to spell it – the right way. Nothing superior about it.

            If you feel put down, you may have a self-confidence issue.

          • 0 avatar
            PonchoIndian

            I don’t feel put down at all. I hardly think you psycho analyzing me based on sarcastic internet posts is going to support your cause.

            If you cut some of the arrogance out of your reply it would be easier to accept your argument.

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      Are you really saying you could get a new G for under $30,000? Jack’s transaction price was under $30,000.

      I’d believe you could get one for the ~$34K MSRP of the nav-equipped Accord — but it wouldn’t have nav.

      • 0 avatar
        EX35

        paid under 30K out the door for a 2013 G37. Base model, but has pretty decent standard equipment (leather, dual climate, heated seats, decent stereo, nice alloys, etc.)

    • 0 avatar
      DevilsRotary86

      “However, the G is no longer offered witha manual, which is probably a drawback for many of you.”

      It is. The G coupe is still offered with one, but that pushes the MSRP to $46k.

      It would be a hard call for me. new Honda Accord coupe 6MT or a used Infiniti G coupe 6MT?

  • avatar
    omer333

    Nice to know you’re in the same boat as I am Jack. Deep down, I want another Mustang; but with two kids in car seats, I know it would be cramped quarters for all of us.

    Before anyone says its easy to move the seats up when a kid’s in the back, I’m in the six-foot range, the driver’s seat is almost touching the back seat in these S197s. I ran into the same issue in a co-worker’s Focus hatchback.

  • avatar
    RogerB34

    Mustang has the image and Ford engineering.
    Look under the hood of Mustang and the EXL.
    One is engineered, the other not so much.
    Important to DIY’s.
    The 3L earlier gen Honda engine runs like a Swiss watch so smooth and quiet.

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      “Mustang has the image and Ford engineering.
      Look under the hood of Mustang and the EXL.
      One is engineered, the other not so much.”

      LMAO.

      You’ll be here all week, right. Don’t forget to tip our servers?

  • avatar
    dal20402

    “There’s no automatic day/night rearview mirror.”

    Thank goodness. I hate those things. You can’t see crap behind you when they are on, and they always default to on so you have to manually turn them off every time. I hate the (dealer-installed before I bought) one in my current Forester XT and I hated the (factory) one in my Acura TSX.

    Really too bad about that passenger seat, though.

    • 0 avatar
      PonchoIndian

      There’s no automatic day/night rearview mirror.”

      Thank goodness. I hate those things.

      These first world problems are really a bitch :)

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        Indeed. :)

        But it still makes me happy that the Accord doesn’t have one even in full-boat EX-L trim.

      • 0 avatar
        Lorenzo

        The only automatic day/night rear view mirrors I’ve dealt with were on GM cars from Hertz, and I couldn’t see anything with a car behind me at night. The manual flip in my ’05 Buick is not as dark, and I rarely use it.

        I rented a Taurus a couple months ago, and was doing 50 in a 50 zone on a freeway-to-freeway single lane ramp, and when I sat up momentarily, I discovered a car was tailgating me. I’d had no idea it was even there, so with rear decks so high and rear windows so small, I guess rear view mirrors don’t matter anymore.

      • 0 avatar
        davefromcalgary

        I also dislike auto dimming rearview mirrors. Same reason. A bit of stray light and the rearview mirror is now just a funny shaped OnStar control pod hanging from the windshield.

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      Different strokes I guess, because the one in my ’03 350Z is awesome. At first I thought who needs a mirror that automatically dims, but seriously this now on my list of must-haves in a new vehicle. No more being blinded by the HID headlights behind you in traffic. Works fine during the day as well. Hard to improve upon a simple rear view mirror but the auto-dimming setup is great IMHO.

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        I find the dimmed mirror has two problems:

        1) It makes it impossible to tell how far away cars other than the one directly behind you are.
        2) It makes it impossible to identify cars (is that a regular old Malibu six carlengths behind me in the other lane, or a cop’s W-Impala?)

      • 0 avatar
        Carfan94

        I wish my car an auto dimming rear view mirror even in my Midsize SUV i still get blinded by rednecks in their stupid jacked up trucks with cheap HIDs. I also wish my car had auto dimming side mirrors because you cant flip those.

      • 0 avatar
        Dave M.

        I gotta agree with you. I have light-sensitive eyes, and the mirror in the Outback has been awesome. Now if I could only mount two hi-intensity spot lights on the back of my roof rack so I can flip a switch and throw off a “your hi-beams are on/back-the-fuck-off” vibe that would be great.

        And cheaper probably than a rocket launcher.

    • 0 avatar
      burgersandbeer

      I don’t like auto-dimming mirrors either. The one in the E46 turns everything behind you into a mess of blurry lights. Unless the highway is perfectly straight or the car behind you is fairly close, it’s hard to even see what lane they are in. Also, forget about spotting police behind you.

      • 0 avatar
        snakebit

        I’ve had the opposite experience in my E46 coupe. The automatic dimming mirror works fine for me, much better than the manual day/night one in my Golf.

    • 0 avatar

      Indeed, in my experience modern auto-dimming mirrors are somewhat full of fail. Worst part is, you cannot easily disable them. But it’s obvious that Jack disagrees with us. I’m curious why.

      • 0 avatar

        > Indeed, in my experience modern auto-dimming mirrors are somewhat full of fail. Worst part is, you cannot easily disable them.

        At least on mine and couple other I’ve bothered to notice it’s just a button on the mirror to disable it. This should represent significant portion given they’re pretty standard OEM parts.

    • 0 avatar
      iganpo

      The ones in my ’01 3 series and ’12 3 series work perfectly. Neither have an off switch. BMW: The Ultimate Rear-View Mirror Machine.

    • 0 avatar
      sgeffe

      I put an accessory one in my 2006 Accord (really just a Gentex sold through the dealer), and I got used to it after a while.

      The one in the new Accords has light sensors front AND back so that it won’t dim unless the ambient light is low enough. Mine is perfect! (The automatic lighting algorithm is as good as it gets on the Accords as well — the lights are on when you’d expect (and sometimes when you wouldn’t), but unlike in the previous-generation Accords, the dash lighting doesn’t go to the “Night” setting automatically, but again, uses a nicely-calibrated ambient light sensor to switch the settings.)

      As I’ve opined on here, some of the goofy-looking “retro” mirrors are what REALLY gets my dander up! If I’m spending north of $30k for a car, I expect a nice, beefy electrochromic mirror which will STAY WHERE IT’S PUT like on my Accord, NOT some clown-faced, “smiley” POS like I’ve seen in some German makes (including MINIs, Smarts, etc.), and others! Special mention goes to the “frameless” mirrors like those in the Viper, Vette and Camaro among others: they look like they’ll snap off the post after the third adjustment!

  • avatar
    ponchoman49

    The current Accord is so much better than the mediocre Camry in many ways that it’s no wonder it’s moving up and past it’s rival in the sales race.

    • 0 avatar
      sgeffe

      If Toyota would have simply improved the last-gen interior’s touch points instead of going for the “stitched” dash and other “bling”-ish stuff, they could have had a shot at segment-leader status (at least until the Accord came out), as the Focus is too “busy,” and the 6’s center-stack looks a bit dated. But they seemed to have rested on their laurels!

      Just my HO, folks; no flames, please! (And admittedly, I didn’t get to an auto show this year, so I don’t know if the 2014.5s improved the interior.) But ANY improvement would help, as the LAST-Gen Accord’s interior, in its final year of 2012, was heads and tails over the Camry’s, parked twenty feet away from each other on the floor!

  • avatar
    Sammy B

    It’s really a shame they killed the EX-L V6 6MT sedan after 07. It’s perfect for me. As a father of 3 under 8 years old, the back doors are a must. I get Honda’s decision (as they would rather you buy a TSX or TL), but now that the TLX is likely to not have a manual option, give us back the Accord V6 6MT sedan! The incremental cost to make this happen would be ludicrously low, and likely immaterial for a company this size [I get why Mazda may not do it, but Honda can].

    • 0 avatar
      Reino

      Agreed. The only way to get a 4-door V6 with stick is in the TL, but the back seat doesn’t fold down. That is a dealbreaker in a daily-driver for me!

    • 0 avatar
      sgeffe

      I’ve always stated that Honda should have taken the Sport, which is an LX (base-level Accord, well-equipped though it is) with 18″ wheels, dual exhaust, and a 5hp bump. What Honda needed to do was to make an EX-Sport, EX-L Sport, V6 Sport and Touring Elite, which takes the base trims and adds those features. (Honda offers a Touring in Canada which doesn’t include the Adaptive Cruise Control found in the V6-only version in the states, and which is automatic-only, but is offered with the K24 and the V6. Both Canadian Tourings get 18″ wheels, which are not offered on the US version.)

      The 6MT would be the icing on the cake for a Touring Elite or V6-Sport trim! Only other viable (and inferior option) would be a Camry SE-V6, if it was offered with a stick.

  • avatar
    philadlj

    Good to see you’re not regretting your purchase. YOUR SKILLS ARE COMPLETE.

    I was pleasantly surprised (once I got used to the flight deck dash) that my ’09 Civic retained much of the nimbleness and delicacy on its feet that my older, smaller Civic had, only in a larger package with (more than) enough power to keep up with highway traffic, and slightly better efficiency despite the added bulk (more modern engine, aero, and reduced need to constantly thrash the engine).

    I could always use more brake though, and lament the fact you can’t see the front of the car from the drivers seat.

    • 0 avatar
      NoGoYo

      What is up with Civic dashboards? My mom’s boyfriend drives a 2010 and the dashboard is ENORMOUS! I can’t see the front of the car either, I guess he manages by being over 6 foot.

  • avatar
    dal20402

    Jack, just how bad are the brakes? Do you experience fade or poor stopping power in aggressive on-road driving, or are your concerns limited to the track?

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      I think most cars are under-braked (if that’s a word). Especially since now-a-days everything seems to be riding on over sized tire/rim packages. To me brakes are the least improved thing in modern vehicles. Its almost like once ABS came out in the ’90s everyone just gave up on brake tech and figured a computer will handle it.

      If you ever want to learn just how sucky your brakes really are put your car on the track! Honestly how much extra would it cost for OEMs to make a car stop sooner? Which would make everyone SAFER? People always talk 0-60 time, horsepower and fuel mileage, yet very few reviews comment on the brakes. Well other then hybrids which feel odd due to the re-generation system.

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        “Honestly how much extra would it cost for OEMs to make a car stop sooner?”

        It’s really the tires, not the brakes, that determine how soon you can stop in one panic stop (assuming the brake distribution is good, which it usually is in modern cars).

        The difference between good and bad brakes is really in how they handle abuse such as repeated hard stops. Good brakes (such as the stock pizza-pie rotors with Brembo four-piston calipers on my G8) will shrug it off. Lousy brakes will overheat and fade, and then later you will discover the rotors are warped.

      • 0 avatar
        JuniperBug

        Ironically, my old Miata’s brakes only start to feel good once you’re pushing it hard a little. They’re small rotors and single-piston sliding calipers, initial feel is a bit soft and they’re not heavily boosted, but once you start wailing on them, they work quite well. Oddly, both with the senior-citizen-special ceramic pads that were on the car when I bought it, and the street-performance pads that are on it now, the brakes are noticeably happier once you get a couple of stops’ worth of heat into them, and I don’t fade them. Mind you, I’m not driving Laguna Seca in this thing, but on the small road course that doesn’t see more than 80 MPH, these 15 year-old brakes seem to hold up just fine at a novice level for 20 minute sessions, and they’re saucer cups compared to the rotors on today’s cars.

        As has been said, for a single panic stop, your tires are your limiting factor, not your braking power. Hell, Car and Driver tested a 267 hp Camry and its stopping distances were only about 13 feet longer from highway speeds when keeping full throttle vs a normal panic stop. Seems to me like in that case there is plenty of reserve braking power for the type of use that a midsize family sedan is going to get.

        • 0 avatar

          > Hell, Car and Driver tested a 267 hp Camry and its stopping distances were only about 13 feet longer from highway speeds when keeping full throttle vs a normal panic stop.

          Not if you only stomp on the gas instead of the brake per unintended acceleration. Then you pull the parking brake at the same time to get a nice 100ft skid from the rears to collect a few million from Toyota.

          • 0 avatar
            mnm4ever

            Maybe not millions… We just got our check yesterday from the big class action lawsuit. $125. Guess that’s the price they put on being a moron. And no, our MR2 has never accelerated unintentionally.

        • 0 avatar
          3Deuce27

          @ ‘Juniperbug’ _ “Bit Soft” Sounds like they weren’t bled in the proper sequence. They should be hard at first effort. Proper bleed order_ LR, RR, LF, RF.

          Even the ‘NA’ 89′-93′ brakes in good shape, should put your nose on the windshield in a full effort or panic stop application.

          The Spec, track, and enduro Miata’s don’t need anything but stock brakes(calipers & rotors) with a pad and fluid upgrade, along with steel or Teflon lined metal braided hose.

          We are doing a 5.0 V-8 conversion, and will only be upgrading the front brakes to the 94′ and newer 255mm brakes.

    • 0 avatar
      greaseyknight

      I’ve heard that the OEM’s are designing brake systems to be lighter to reduce the rotating weight(to increase fuel economy)and unsprung weight (to improve handling). The result, I expect, is less mass to absorb heat and maybe less friction area.

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      Concerns are limited to the track. Eleven-inch discs are enough for street stops on a car this light.

  • avatar
    jd418197

    Jack – I lived north of Columbus for a couple decades, went to OU in Athens, and have an Acura CL 6MT. I also play terrible guitar. Your Miami U photos, Accord coupe with the manual, and Central Ohio references tell we’d get along either very well or not at all. But I think you may have just sold me on one of these to replace my CL that’s pushing 150k. Thanks for the review. Go Bobcats.

  • avatar
    mikey

    Nice to see that Honda got its styling touch back. I also like the idea of a mid size coupe. Sharp looking car…Dude.

    @ Jack..If I had a dollar for every time I swore off something, only to change my mind later, especially when it comes to vehicles. I would have whole lot of dollars.

  • avatar
    bryanska

    How is the leather?

    I’ve noticed the old-gen Accord and Odyssey have hard, cold leather. is the new Accord any better?

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      Better than that, about what you get in a new Three.

    • 0 avatar
      sgeffe

      The quality is a vast improvement over my 7th-Gen’s! There were complaints of that generation’s leather splitting at the seams at times! Mine didn’t, but the driver’s seat had that “shiny” look that wouldn’t go away after a while, no matter how I tried to clean it!

      My 2013 Touring is a year old, and the driver’s seat looks brand-new; did one mild-dish-soap-cleaning/Lexol-treatment ritual last summer, wiped it down a couple times with Armor-All Leather Wipes, and had a full interior detail done in January.

      Being OCD about this stuff, I do have a temporary seat-cover which goes on when it rains or snows, which may have helped somewhat.

  • avatar
    carguy

    Not that the Accord coupe is not nice but a review of ones own car can never be objective – I think that is why Robert Farrago had a policy against it.

    • 0 avatar
      mikey

      Back in the day, I got into RF’s dog house. {a place I was quite familiar with}… I questioned, online, a review of a high end Mercedes. The reviewer, in his glowing report mentioned that he had owned nine of them.

    • 0 avatar
      imag

      I think it is pretty clear that the intent is not to be objective. The intent is to say, “I now have some experience with the car that you all watched me buy. Here is how I feel about it relative to other cars I have owned.” I don’t see any grand proclamations, ratings, gold stars, etc., that would make bias a concern.

      The good thing about a ownership car review is that it allows for all the niggling things to surface. That makes it interesting, biased or not.

  • avatar
    Kyree S. Williams

    So do you think that the choppy ride is a result of the suspension or the large wheels? And does this car have a slightly-sportier setup, being the sportiest factory Accord that you can buy?

  • avatar
    slance66

    Welcome to middle aged parenthood Jack. Thinking doesn’t need to involve testosterone. The Mustang (or Audi S5) would be the testosterone choice, the Accord the one involving your brain. Practical cars have compromises, but if we choose wisely, those compromises can be quite small. An single friend of mine with no kids recently purchased a new M3 (last of its kind) as his sole vehicle in the Boston area. He has to commute with it, including in the snow, and drive on our broken pavement. Crazy. Great car, bad decision.

    • 0 avatar
      jrasero23

      Great point. My last car was a 2010 Accord Coupe EX-L V6 and I bought it because I had to compromise between sport and practicality, performance and MPG, looks and reliability. In the end while the coupe was a good car the four doors and lack of AWD made it impractical for me.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    “It simply refuses to display the sort of leaden inertia that the “small” German coupes have now.”

    Is it weird that I enjoy this feeling? I want it to feel leaden and solid. I’ve no desire for sprightly!

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    I shall also comment here that the Audi 4.2 V8 is a GEM of an engine.

  • avatar
    Davekaybsc

    If you’re looking to justify a 2X price increase from a Honda by way of interior materials, the A4/A5 is not the car I would point to. Audi’s days as the interior design and quality leaders are over. I’ve been in the current gen A4/A5 several times, and every time I’m struck by the blatantly obvious cost cutting everywhere.

    Rock hard vinyl arm rests that don’t line up with your arms, hard seats with plastic feeling leather, rubbery plastic center stack with cheap feeling buttons and blank buttons galore, ‘gloss black’ plastic upper center console, and dirt cheap, hard plastic lower console area where the cup holders are. Only the MMI knobs and temperature controls really feel nice at all.

    In many years past, the Audi would make the equivalent Mercedes or BMW feel like a concrete prison cell. These days, getting out of a Mercedes or BMW and into an Audi makes you think “overpriced Jetta.”

    Just look at the brand new C-class, it makes the A4 look like an old VW Lupo on the inside.

    • 0 avatar
      Carlson Fan

      I have to agree. My wifes brand new A4 really isn’t all that nice on the inside. In fact I’m not sure it is any nicer to sit in than our ’07 LTZ Chevy Tahoe. Overall I’d give the nod to the Audi but in some areas the 7 year old Chevy puts it to shame interior wise.

      • 0 avatar
        jmo

        In terms of what….specifically?

        • 0 avatar
          Carlson Fan

          Lets start with the part of the steering wheel you hold onto. I’m not sure WTF Audi used, it looks like fake leather, but it sure isn’t as nice as the wheel in the Tahoe. A lot of the plastics in the Tahoe have a higher quality look to them. The HVAC vents, dash top for example. The only place the Audi is noticeably nicer is the door panels. We had a 2005 TT and I remember that interior being a lot nicer. So again I would have to agree w/davekaybsc that Audi interiors aren’t what they used to be. It’s surprising that I can even compare it to a 7 year old Chevy truck.

      • 0 avatar
        SayMyName

        Yeah… no.

  • avatar
    mnm4ever

    I used to hate Honda service departments too, but I have had very good experienced with a few lately, I think they might have improved. Hopefully yours goes well.

    And wow that new Civic coupe is UGLY. The sedan is much cleaner, as is your Accord.

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      I think that Civic coupe is the first car I’ve seen where the plastic fog light inserts are larger than the headlights. Not a good look.

    • 0 avatar
      mnm4ever

      They are not out of place on the extreme Lambo. On the Civic, they look silly.

      But that EX is kind of an awkward car, it looks like it sits up too high, the hood is too short. And it is more expensive than an Si without the performance increase. After shopping for 2 Civics recently, I can’t see a reason to get the EX over the LX. For the price increase it seems you are better off getting an Accord. Where Jack’s coupe is graceful and sleek, the Civic coupe looks a bit ungainly. The Civic sedan is more proportional.

  • avatar
    Offbeat Oddity

    I’m glad you like the Accord, Jack. I remember you reviewed a 2007 Accord V6 a few years back (I have the 2007 four cylinder and am pretty satisfied overall), and you didn’t seem particularly impressed, so I’m glad to see this one is better.

    I’m pleasantly surprised that you didn’t seem to mind the steering much. I’ve heard mixed things on the Accord’s new electric setup, with some owners complaining it’s too light and requires lots of corrections on the highway. The steering on my ’07 is one of my favorite things about it, so it’ll be interesting to see how the 2014 fares. I expect only the Mazda 6 or Ford Fusion might be better with regard to steering weight/feel among the current crop of sedans, though.

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      Funny how much difference steering can make.

      My current car is a G8 GXP. I like the car, but think of replacing it more than occasionally, mostly because I’m driven crazy by the cheapness and rattliness of the interior. You would think that what would bind me to it would be the combination of a stonking V8 and a stick, something unavailable now in any sedan short of a BMW 550i.

      But, no. The LS3 has too much power to use on the street, and the transmission/clutch combo is a bit cumbersome. What keeps me from trading it in isn’t the powertrain at all, but the combination of the steering and brakes. The steering is divine — better than any other car I’ve ever driven post-2000. Accurate, tight, just the right effort, tons of feedback, tremendously confidence-inspiring. The brakes are unstoppable even in highly aggressive street use and (combined with good tires) have kept me out of two accidents where I was sure metal would be bent.

      I’d happily go to a 200 hp car if I knew it would have the same level of steering and braking prowess, but pretty much nothing does.

      • 0 avatar
        ShoogyBee

        I had leased a 2010 Accord LX and its steering provided a very decent amount of feel. The only bad thing I could say about it is that it was slightly nervous and darty just off center. It is certainly better than the current Accord’s EPS, which isn’t bad as far as EPS goes.

        Funny thing is I ended up buying a used 2010 Camry LE 4-cyl and I found that it’s hydraulic steering is significantly better than, say, the Civic’s EPS.

        • 0 avatar
          jrasero23

          I had a 2010 Coupe, the steering was better than the 2014 but that’s not saying much both are very light. I did however like the 2014’s super rev happy engine and noise

    • 0 avatar
      sgeffe

      It is set up decently. Could use a little more heft, as the lightness helps to exacerbate the loss of precision brought about by the struts up-front. This car will hang with you, but you have to adjust to the car, unlike with Accords past. The V6’s steering is a touch better because I believe the rack itself receives the assist, a la VAG products; I noticed that a four-banger I test-drove was a little numb on-center.

  • avatar
    charleysheen

    The problem that i have with my wife’s 2014 Honda accord is the choppy ride in city traffic . Any V6 will feel good on smooth straight roads and I agree that Hondas V6 is really good ,just as good as any BMW’s-it is on the poorly paved winding roads that a car proves its mettle. I regularly drive rental Fusions and Chrysler 300 that are much more comfortable with road imperfections and handle better.If youare looking at V6s the Altima V6 is very good too.

  • avatar
    suspekt

    You need one mod pronto!!!!

    ATLP J pipe.

    Leave all else alone, this mod will open that J35 up.

    Second mod would be a lightweight crank pulley.

    You will be simply amazed at how freely these J motors can spin up to redline. Very turbine like.

  • avatar
    mikey

    Correct me if I’m wrong. Any mod to improve performance, will kill your warranty?

  • avatar
    doug-g

    Why all the Honda love on TTAC all of a sudden, is this “sponsored content”? I have a ’12 Accord sedan and I’d be hard pressed to write a paragraph.

  • avatar
    ravenchris

    I agree with EX35, the G37 is best performance sedan for 30K. And I would be very happy with the automatic transmission.

    • 0 avatar
      jrasero23

      I agree but the G37 is rarely found for $32k in the North East because most if not all vendors stock 95% of the sedans with AWD boosting the price above the Honda. I still agree for low $30K the best value for performance.

  • avatar
    pb35

    I had a 2004 G35x in my family for 8 years and my wife drove (babied) it for the majority of the time that we owned it. It was reliable but had its share of “known issues” that surfaced over the years. Among them, compression rod bushings, throttle chamber, CD changer (3x), power seat died. It wasn’t what I expected from a Japanese marque made in Japan. It was ok but not sure if I’d buy another.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      What sort of mileage did you get over time, with that engine? Were ya using premium fuel?

      And what did you replace it with, since this was within 2 years ago?

  • avatar
    pb35

    I never really calculated my gas mileage as I only drive about 8k mi./year. The mileage wasn’t great and I did always use premium fuel. If I had to guess, I was probably getting somewhere in the 16-18 range around town.

    With only 62k on the clock and very clean, my local Dodge “supercenter” gave me $9500 on trade for a new Charger R/T in 2012. I have 2 4 year olds so I needed something bigger than the G and the Dodge has been fun so far. The kids love riding in “daddy car.” While the Dodge dealer service experience has been lacking, I wasn’t crazy about my local Infiniti store either (Austin, TX). I always felt like they were trying to rip me off.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      Thanks for the info. I track mine, even though I’m at about 2k miles a year. I’m getting around 15-16 in the cold weather, with 98% of my driving in town. I’ve only had the car when it was warm out about a week (November), and that tank had higher mpgs.

      Sounds like you did okay on your trade as well.

  • avatar
    pb35

    No problem, good luck with yours. I was following a new style G this morning and I haven’t really been feeling it since it came out. The light must have hit it just right this morning because it looked pretty good. I guess everyone likes the one they owned best, right?

    Another reason that I traded it was because I put a Stillen exhaust on it and it was way too loud to be enjoyable. I was hoping for more of a coupe sound but it was way too much on a daily basis. I’m getting a headache just thinking about it. If you are ever thinking about upgrading your exhaust, make sure you hear it in person first!

  • avatar
    koreancowboy

    I’m wanting to know what else Jack does besides write here and R&T, that allows him to have two Porsches and buy a $30K Accord Coupe…

    • 0 avatar
      3Deuce27

      Reg; “I’m wanting to know what else Jack does”

      Dig deep, stay tuned-in, and you might satisfy your curiosity.

      But, speculation might be more fun.

  • avatar
    jrasero23

    Just traded in my 2010 EX-L V6 Coupe. I test drove a 2014 but was not impressed.

    Why I bought my 2010 Coupe originally was because it was kind of Honda’s hidden gem of a sports lite car. A coupe with a beautiful sculpted body, V6 271 HP engine, and with the option of a manual, is this a sports car? No, because the coupe especially for the 8th gen was a bit bloated, FWD, and lacked the handling of a sports car. None the less the 8th gen and even new 9th gen coupes are surprisingly sporty.

    So why didn’t I buy a brand new coupe? Well for one I have out grown the two door concept and the idea of a luxury car or a luxury sports sedan like a G37 sounds a lot more practical but more so I think Honda took a slight step back with the new 9th gen. For the lack of better words, the 9th gen looks too tranformer-ie. The body kit looks cheesy and overall the body has lost the simplicity of the 8/8.5 gens and has been replaced by Honda’s latest trend of “athletic” vehicles. This is not to say the new coupe isn’t a good car, but for $32k EX-L V6 the Accord isn’t a bargain. Not saying these cars are better but for less you can get a Hyundai Genesis Coupe 2.0T R or Ultimate, Audi A3 1.8T Premium, or for slightly less get Mercedes-Benz CLA250 4MATIC.

  • avatar
    HotPotato

    Former colleague of mine drove one of these and let me borrow it whenever I liked, which was often. It mixes the acceleration and woofle of an American muscle car, the sewing-machine engine smoothness and snick-snick shifter precision of a Honda, and the quiet cabin and good-for-front-drive chassis refinement of an Audi. In short, great car. Reminded me of the benchmark for semi-premium go-fast luxury coupes, the ’89 Lincoln Mark 7 LSC 5.0, if it were upgraded with a proper manual tranny and a modern rear suspension, and downgraded with a better-luck-next-refresh body. 8.5/10, would drive.

  • avatar
    HotPotato

    Should clarify it wasn’t a ’14, this was 2 yrs ago.


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